All in the Family: Justice, Thy Name is Archie
*It is after work for Archie, who has stopped off at Kelsey's bar before going home. He is sitting talking to his best friend, Barney Hefner, whose dog, Rusty, has left another "delivery" for Archie this morning.*
"Will you calm down, Arch," says Barney.
"Whaddaya mean, 'calm down'? How would like finding an unexpected 'gift' on your porch in the morning?"
"I'd appreciate it."
"If it was from Rusty?"
"Well Arch, it's the thought that counts," Barney laughs and ribs Archie.
Archie looks at him in digust.
"Look pal, all kidding aside, he's just doing what comes natural."
"Well, nature don't belong on my porch. I live in Queens, not a rainforest."
Archie looks at his watch.
"Geez, look at the time. I gotta get outta here."
As Archie heads to the door, he turns to Barney.
"Now I'm warning you Barney, if that mutt of yours makes anymore 'deliveries' on my porch, you're gonna be gettting some 'returrn-to-senders'."
Barney groans and goes back to drinking as Archie leaves.
*As Archie is walking home, there appears to be no one else around. As he walks around a corner Suddenly hears a commotion coming from an alley. A gunshot is soon heard. Archie goes back around the block and peeks from around the corner. He sees to black men running towards a black Cadillac and speed away. Archie slowly walks back around the corner and heads slowly and cautiously towards the alley he saw the men run out of. He looks inside the alley and is shocked by what he sees.*
"Oh my God."
*Back at the Bunker House, dinner is already on the table as Edith, Mike, and Gloria are sitting at it. They figured Archie probably stopped off at the bar or got stuck on the subway again, so they are not too concerned about him being late.*
"Gee, I hope Daddy gets home soon," Gloria says.
"Yeah, me too," says Mike.
"Mike, are you concerned about Archie," asks Edith.
"Not exactly, Ma. I'm concerned about the mood he'll be in."
"What do you mean, honey?"
"Gloria, you know as well as I do that whenever Archie comes home late, he comes in a bad mood and the later he is, the worse his mood is."
"Oh, Mike, maybe Archie will come home in a good mood for a change."
Mike gives Edith a look of disbelief.
"Do you honestly believe that, Ma?"
"Well, no...but it don't hurt to be hopeful."
"Look, I'll bet you within a minute of coming home, he'll slam the door, call me a Meathead, and start ranting about his lousy day. You just -- uh-huh, I think I hear him now. You'll see."
Archie walks slowly through the door with a blank look on his face and shuts it quietly. Edith runs up to him.
"Yeah, hi there, Edith," he answers unemotionally as he hangs his hat and coat.
Gloria and Mike greet him as well.
"Gloria. Mike," still without feeling as he goes to sit in his chair.
Mike is stunned.
"He didn't call me Meathead, he didn't slam the door, and he not ranting about his lousy day. Something must be wrong," he says silently to Gloria.
"Yeah. Hey Daddy, are you all right?"
"Oh, yeah. Yeah, I'm great there. I've never felt better I...uh, no. Not really...not at all."
"What's the matter, Archie," asks a concerned Edith.
Archie just looks at Edith struggling to speak. Edith now sits in her chair next to Archie. Mike and Gloria sit on the couch now intent on hearing what is troubling Archie.
"Archie...what is it," Edith asks with greater concern.
Archie just looks at her for a minute and finally speaks though seemingly with great difficulty.
"Well, Edith...uh, I think I may have...witnessed a murder."
Archie sighs heavily as everyone looks at him in shock.
end part one